Well here it is, my long awaited game 38. To view my last game, click here. To view my next game click here. To view my batrep registry, click here.

To view the animated version of this report, click here.

This game was the last of my games at the 500pt. level in our escalation league. As this would be my last chance to do 500pts. in awhile, and because I've been slightly put off by the results of my previous matches at this points level, I thought I would do something drastically different from the norm. After all, that's a part of what escalation league is all about, right?

THE CHALLENGER: Huh, "shiny boots" only costs +1 per model.

Autarch with mandiblasters, power weapon

5-elf ranger squad

11-elf guardian squad with scatter laser

Vyper with bright lance

5-elf fire dragon squad - with exarch with pike, tank hunters


Senior officer with powerfist, laspistol, carapace
Priest with eviscerator, CCW, carapace
4x guardsmen with LP, CCW ("standard" is just a stick)

5-man vet squad with 3 plasma guns

Junior officer with storm bolter, mortar

2x 10-man squads with mortars

3-mortar heavy weapons team.

The mission was "kill them all!" on gamma. I rolled a hat trick for pre-game rolling.

After deployment, the field looked like this:

To view a hi-res copy, click here.

Well, my plan is pretty obvious. Basically, I'm going to hide, and see how useful/less these mortars are and when things get close, I'll pop out and nail them with either my vets or my HQ. Let's see how this goes...


"No, seriously, you've got to be kidding."

Melchoir looked at the priest. The carapace armor made it so that he couldn't move his neck much, and so looking at someone usually involved the officer turning his entire torso. This time was no exception.

"No, seriously, I'm serious."

"But you look ridiculous."

Melchoir drew a fragment of a shuriken from his front pocket and showed it to the priest. Sanario rolled his eyes in concession.

"Fine, but what about all this?" the priest said, gesturing to the mortar battery behind them.

"What is so cowardly about blowing up our xeno foe without them being able to see us, huh?"

"I just think you're being over cautious is all."

"Your concern has been duly noted," the officer replied in a dry tone, "Now, help me get up, this carapace armor is heavy."

Well, time for my maiden use of mortars. Fire!

The first two mortars from the squads on the right hit dead on, and through all of the cover saves, they manage to get a kill, pinning the squad.

Meanwhile, the mortar battery misses, but one of the subsequent shots is able to clip a guardian, but doesn't kill it. My left side mortar also targets the guardians, but scatters off the board.

I seriously considered shooting a mortar at his vyper, as, being an open topped vehicle, I would have gotten two chances to penetrate it before it started moving. In the end, I figured that my plasma guns would be sufficient for killing his vyper.

After this point, the field looked like this:

In his turn, he begins his grand assault. He starts by moving his troops up on the left, advancing while still hiding behind the building. On the right, his vyper scoots to the side, but behind the toppled wall (too much size 3 terrain otherwise).

As nothing has a clear shot, his turn expires.

After this point, the field looked like this:


"Have the eldar moved?" Melchoir asked over the vox.

"Yes, sir."

"Good, recalibrate."

Melchoir turned his torso towards Sanario. He had that look in his eyes like when something was about to explode, and it was his fault.

"Mortars at the ready, sir!"

"heh heh heh, FIRE!"

In my turn, I start by moving my command squad and my vets closer towards their eventual intended targets.

Then my mortars let fly. My battery's ranging shot fell off the board, but the left side mortar managed to kill a fire dragon. Meanwhile, my other mortars rained down on his guardians, killing one.

The guardians pass their pinning test, but the dragons fail it (lol +1).

After this point, the field looked like this:

Without any direct fire weapons to worry about, my opponent decides to stride on out into the open. His autarch scores well on it's fleet and makes a break for it in front of the pinned fire dragons.

In shooting, his vyper can barely draw LOS to one of my mortar bases, zapping one silly with its bright lance.

Once again, nobody else has LOS to anything else, so the turn ends.

After this point, the field looked like this:


In my turn, my vets get closer to the vyper, waiting to pounce.

And then my mortars fire.

My battery once again scatters, but one of the secondary shots just barely manages to clip a fire dragon, killing it. Meanwhile my other 3 mortars all scatter away from his guardians.

His fire dragons once again fail their pinning test (lol +2 :D )

After this point, the field looked like this:

In return he barrels his army in towards mine.

Both the autarch and the guardians make some good fleet rolls.

In shooting, his vyper, the only unit with LOS tries once again to kill a mortar team member, but misses.

In assault, his autarch makes a full move through cover for his assault, piling into my guardsmen squad. He hit with all of his attacks, and, in the end, 4 guardsmen went down to his power weapon Cuisinart, set to "blend"...

My squad decides to be brave, though, egged on by getting a wound on the autarch, and sticks around.

After this point, the field looked like this:


Melchoir watched as the eldar hero suddenly appeared in front of him.

"All mortars, fire at will!" the officer shouted as Sanario started up his eviscerator. The priest sent an icy cold stare at the autarch.

"Angry priest, coming through!" Melchoir shouted.

"In... The... NAME OF THE EMPEROR!" Sanario shouted, "IN THE NAME OF THE KING!! KILL THE XENO!!!"

In movement, my vets scale up onto the parapets with a perfect plummeting shot down against the vyper. As well, my HQ moves forwards up to the autarch, ready for carnage.

In shooting, my mortar barrage finally scored a hit with its ranging shot. Of a half a dozen hits or so, two of the guardians drop. As well, one of my other mortars scattered close, nailing a third one. Meanwhile, my vets unload a silly amount of plasma onto his vyper easily causing it to crash and burn. While I got two overheats, my flak armor actually stopped one of the burns this time!

In close combat, his autarch attacks my mortar squad again, but has the exact opposite luck, and doesn't manage to kill a single one. Then, my HQ made it into combat. I don't know if it was the 15 normal close combat attacks or the 8 power fist attacks that did it, but whoever held the killing blow, the autarch obviously didn't survive the fight. Both squads consolidated back behind the building.

After this point, the field looked like this:

In his turn, he continued to move his forces forwards in a mad scramble to get something into line of sight.

Unfortunately for me, something already was: my veterans.

His guardians and snipers unloaded on my vets. Through the blizzard of shuriken and laser fire, only one, lone vet managed to survive. Needless to say, he decided to book it.

After this point, the field looked like this:


"Yes!" Sanario shouted, "We have vanquished our enemy!"

The priest looked through the window and saw the approaching fire dragons.

"Forsooth! There are more xeno scum to be destroyed in the name of the emperor!"

"You know, he's right, they ARE scum!" Melchoir thought to himself as he turned to face the incoming eldar.


In my turn, I scored well for difficult terrain with my command squad and thought I could make it to his dragons on the charge. Slightly dangerous, but I thought that perhaps I could pin his nearby guardians, to prevent my HQ from being gunned down.

In shooting, my mortar barrage missed badly. As did two of my other mortars. The remaining one was able to scatter short enough to knick one of the guardians, but the mesh armor held fast.


In assault, I charge into the dragons, mangling them silly. I suppose that's what happens in the face of a gagillion rerolls and you're the least CC oriented aspect...

My command squad finishes the fight off by consolidating a whopping 2".

Double crap.

After this point, the field looked like this:

In his turn, he moves his remaining offensive unit towards my hapless command squad.

Shooting begins with an absolutely horrific scatter laser blast, scoring 4 hits, 4 wounds, and 4 failed flak armor saves.

Then he opened up with his shuriken catapults, most of which were in range. Thankfully, his shooting with his catapults was much worse than that with his scatter laser. The end result is 4 wounds, ALL of which are saved by my carapace armor.

A couple of snipers in the tower also have a shot, scoring two wounds, one of which was AP1. I decided to ace the priest, while my commander passes his carapace armor shot.

Melchoir turned to the right and his eye twitched. Suddenly a blast from the enemy's scatter laser simultaneously killed Melchoir's entire retinue save the priest.

"Shurikens!" the officer shouted as a lethal storm of metal disks filled the air.

"RAUGH!" Sanario shouted as he started to charge when suddenly a sniper shot hit him just above the ear, ripping the comm set from his head.

"See?" Shouted Melchoir to the dazed priest over the hellatious clattering of metal on carapace armor, this is why you ALWAYS wear a helmet."

As if on cue, another sniper shot hit Melchoir smack in the head, but the shot bounced off his helmet.

After this point, the field looked like this:


The priest shook off his momentary daze and looked back towards the guardians


In my turn, I charge my command squad in, hoping that my mortars won't have the same fiasco of shooting as they did last time.

In shooting, my mortar barrage misses it's ranging shot again, but I was able to hit with two of my other single mortars, causing three of his guardians to go down.

Whether he was pinned or not was irrelevant, as the guardians were suddenly beset upon by a pair of very angry humans. His three guardians were able to get three desperate attacks in for a surprising three hits and two wounds. Unfortunately, my carapace finally gave out, letting a wound get through, putting the priest down.

Even without the priest, though, I got three hits with my officer, enough to gooify the remaining guardians. Unfortunately, two of those hits failed to wound... which meant that the combat was a tie...

After this point, the field looked like this:

With the only thing in LOS also in close combat, we moved right along to the assault phase.

Melchoir breathed hard. His new carapace armor was heavy, and he was unused to how off-balance it made him. He awkwardly swung forward, grabbing one of the guardians by its tall, pointy hat. With a loud grunt, he crushed the guardian's head in like a soda can.

Suddenly, he felt a sharp pain in his side...

In close combat, I manage only two hits, one of which AGAIN fails to wound. His guardians got a stab in through my carapace, leaving the combat tied, yet again.

After this point the field looked like this:


I killed everything but half a guardian squad and his snipers for a total of 351 pts. He killed my vets and half my command squad for +150 pts. for a "solid victory". A few things:

- So, in the end, my mortars were no wonder weapon. They did, however, kill 7 guardians, 2 fire dragons and a ranger. Considering that if they were heavy bolters, they would have had to have been in LOS, which would have meant only about 2 reliable turns of shooting, the mortars didn't preform that poorly. I think the real credential here was that I didn't give my opponent any victory points from a unit that had a mortar in it. My only real regret was shooting at those snipers on turn 1. I should have known better than to attack something that had little to no chance of drawing appreciable line of sight to me.

- As well, the battery of mortars, though it really, really, liked to miss, was okay. That's because it's one of those weapons where even though it missed, it can still hit. This is because if I score a "hit" with one of the other mortars in the volley (or scatter in the right direction), I can still wing someone, even if the ranging shot scattered 5" away from someone. And in the end, I got some LOL's from pinning, which I suppose makes everything okay.

- This is the third time in 38 games that I've seen carapace armor make a difference, and the first in a game that I was one of the players in one such game. I'm still far from convinced that it's all that great, but it definitely felt a little good being able to shrug off shurikens like that.

- This was my first time playing a public game without a vehicle in my ranks. As much as I love vehicles, I can start to see the appeal of fielding nothing but goobers.

MVP: My command squad, hands down. Responsible for finishing off the autarch, killing the fire dragons, and dragging the guardians down to less than half strength, this squad made it's points back in spades. I'm so glad that they allowed 2 wound characters at this level.

Hero of the Game: The one mortar guy who got fried by a bright lance. It takes true heroism to hide behind a wall next to a dozen of your peers, including your senior officer and a fanatic priest of doom, and still be able to ball up and cry like a little girl when you accidentally get hit by an anti tank weapon.

Sanario walked into Melchoir's field office.

Melchoir looked up and nodded.

The priest walked forward and sat down in a chair on the other side of the desk, wincing from the knife wound. He looked to see an oversized suit of carapace armor on a rack near to the desk.

"They counted," the officer began, "And they pulled out 482 shuriken fragments from that suit of armor."


A silence fell for a moment as Melchoir returned to his paperwork, signing a document.

"So," began Melchoir, "I got to blow stuff up. And you?"

The priest smiled, "I got to chop things in half."

"Well," the officer smiled back, "I think that deserves a brandy, you?"

I hope you enjoyed game 38. Wait 'till next week when I escalate up to the 750 pt. level.